Posts by: Stephanie

How to Be Happy: A Prayer for Good Humor

How to Be Happy: A Prayer for Good Humor

Joy is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit, and an important part of our spiritual growth. Pope Francis said, “An evangelizer must never look like someone who has just come back from a funeral!” And St. Teresa of Avila, a Doctor of the Church, once prayed, “God save us from sour-faced saints!”

But there is so much in the world that brings us down, how can we maintain joy and a good sense of humor? As with everything, the key to growth is through prayer. If you’ve ever wondered how Pope Francis remains so joyful, one reason is a certain prayer he prays every day – the Prayer for Good Humor by St. Thomas More.

Here is the text of the prayer written by the English martyr:

Grant me, O Lord, good digestion, and also something to digest.
Grant me a healthy body, and the necessary good humor to maintain it.
Grant me a simple soul that knows to treasure all that is good
and that doesn’t frighten easily at the sight of evil,
but rather finds the means to put things back in their place.
Give me a soul that knows not boredom, grumblings, sighs and laments,
nor excess of stress, because of that obstructing thing called “I.”
Grant me, O Lord, a sense of good humor.
Allow me the grace to be able to take a joke to discover in life a bit of joy,
and to be able to share it with others.
Amen.

Try starting your day with this prayer and begin looking at the world in a brighter light!

Diocese of Phoenix Sparks a Movement for Catholic Men

Diocese of Phoenix Sparks a Movement for Catholic Men

From the National Catholic Register:

The Diocese of Phoenix is helping to spark a movement to bring men back into the life of the Church and encourage them to answer their calling as Catholic men who are fathers, husbands, sons and brothers.

The blueprint for this effort came last September, in the form of a 40-page apostolic exhortation from Bishop Thomas Olmsted. Titled “Into the Breach,” it struck a nerve nationally for the simple-yet-bold call it issued to Catholic men to step up and engage in the spiritual battle raging around them, from their homes to their local parishes and beyond.

“To me, it’s really just a simple call to action,” said Steven Pettit, co-director of the Catholic Men’s Fellowship of Phoenix, a lay organization that works closely with the diocese.

“Men are rarely hearing this message in homilies, and, many times, they don’t believe the Mass is directed towards them. So this is being seen as an abrupt wake-up call by men,” Pettit added. “Bishop Olmsted is calling to every man, ‘You are to be involved, and here are the reasons why, and here are the things that you’re called to do as men.’”

The “breaches” that the diocese is combating include the loss of 14 million Catholics in the last 16 years, a nearly quarter decline in the number of children in parish religious education, and a 41% drop in sacramental Catholic marriages across the United States, according to figures from the Center for Applied Research Into the Apostolate (CARA) cited by Bishop Olmsted.

Pereyra, a Peruvian-born immigrant who grew up without a father and is himself now the father to four children, said he has been personally affected by the bishop’s message.

“The thing that was new that came out of it was that we can no longer be these lone rangers that try to do it all. Many men do that. I do that,” he said. “It is necessary for men to come together in brotherhood with other men to support each other. That was very new to me — completely new territory. I’m a pretty independent guy.”

Read more at the National Catholic Register.

How a Radio Show Helped Save a Marriage

How a Radio Show Helped Save a Marriage

Listening to Immaculate Heart Radio, you often hear people call-in to share difficult situations they are facing; and our hosts offer information, encouragement, and advice to help. But what happens to those people after they call? Usually we don’t know.

But sometimes we get to hear an update from our listeners, which is just what happened recently on Heart to Heart with Mother Miriam. A listener named Dawn had called Mother Miriam in the past asking for help with her troubled marriage. Dawn explained her situation:

“My husband decided to leave. We had grown children, and he was never a Catholic but we had a dispensation and were married in the Church. It seemed like he did everything and then, you know, broke loose.

And I had not been happy with it, it had not been a great marriage, and I felt like my soul and my body were being ripped in two. I tried to get rid of all anger – and it took a lot. I had to pray unceasingly. And I had to pray for the women that were involved, and that was hard. Everything was hard and I felt abandoned.

When Dawn called in to Heart to Heart with Mother Miriam, Mother Miriam encouraged her to pray a 54-day novena for her husband. Dawn followed Mother Miriam’s advice and called back to give an update:

“You told me to pray the 54-day novena … And I did it. And he came back. And I had to keep praying because Satan wasn’t going to let go that easily. We went to a Retrouvaille program, which is a Catholic marriage program that is unbelievable because it goes into forgiveness. And I prayed for a conversion of his spirit.

And just in January, Christ touched his heart and not only converted his spirit, but he is a different person. He said ‘I want to be Catholic, I want to do what’s right.’ He now goes to Mass … and by the way I didn’t ask him to do any of this, I just kept praying unceasingly. And I have a marriage today that is better than it has ever been. And it is because we cannot give up.

All I can say is do not let Satan win … do the 54-day novena. I had to let go and I had to trust. I learned a lot about myself. And I thought ‘You know Lord, whatever you need me to do, help me know what it is and I’ll just do it. I’m just gonna trust.’ And I finally got to have peace.”

In addition to the 54-day novena she was encouraged by Mother Miriam to pray , Dawn and her husband participated in Retrouvaille, a program for couples facing marital problems. Here is what Dawn had to say about the program:

“This Retrouvaille program is a beautiful program, it’s Catholic, Christ-centered. It lets you see that everyone in that room felt that they were no longer in love with each other, but they came and they asked Christ to come. And He came. And He poured out His grace for people that felt like we were like, wrapping it up. … And I watched a whole room full of people change. God is so good.”

Listen to Dawn’s call with Mother Miriam below:

Heart to Heart with Mother Miriam airs weekdays from 12:00-1:00 pm Pacific.

For more information about the Retrouvaille marriage program, visit Retrouvaille.org